Mayor Murray Calls For Removal of Fremont Lenin Statue and Capitol Hill Confederate Monument

Comments

2
According to KIRO, there are in fact bodies buried there.
http://www.kiro7.com/news/local/why-is-a…
4
I suggest Murray buy the Lenin statue and then aution it off for his legal expenses in his child sex abuse scandal.
5
What an asshole.
6
@5, yes the Nazi's and Lenin were assholes.
7
Ed's in luck: The Lenin Statue is for sale! The City can buy it tomorrow and melt it down.
8
Since both are privately owned, wtf has the mayor's office got to do with what happens to them?
9
I don't want to see the false-equivalent trolls win, but I'm not going to the mat for the Lenin statue. It was already a curdled joke when it arrived.

When it's put in storage, the Right will celebrate like they won the Superbowl. Fuck them.

Anyone remember the Columbus statue on the waterfront?
10
I'm sure the right will be up in arms now about Seattle's gay, child abusing, socialist mayor trying to circumvent private property rights, right?
11
As a symbol of sexual abuse, will Ed Murray be removing himself from office?
12
"'We celebrate the statute as a commitment to freedom of speech. We decorate it with tutus and scarves. It is not a political symbol,' Sherman told The Stranger. When asked whether the statute should come down, Sherman said, 'Any further comments about that should be directed to the Fremont Troll.'

The Fremont Troll, the more iconic sculpture in the Northwest Seattle neighborhood, did not respond to The Stranger's request for comment."

Thanks for the levity.
13
I always thought the Lenin statue was a tongue-in-cheek thing - like calling UW's Central Plaza "Red Square."
14
@13 It is tongue in cheek. It is also a very distinct statue of Lenin, showing him in movement, made in Czechoslovakia before the fall of the Iron Curtain. The Lenin Statute was never about honoring Lenin, but as an artwork, that was distinct, as a reflection of how this Lenin Statue was different than others numerous Lenin Statues throughout the Eastern Bloc.

It has never been about respecting or honoring Lenin. It is about Art. It should not be removed..
15
Resign now, Ed.
16
Typical Murray and his never ending reach for votes (like he will ever have a tax payer job again) and approval. A 91 year old monument IN HIS OWN BACKYARD just this week became offensive because it's in the news. A day later, the Fremont Lenin statue suddenly became offensive because it's in the news. What a Total Putz!

Go back to Oregon and council drug addicted and homeless young kids like you really want to.
17
He just wants to remove that statue because he has a buddy who will charge the city millions of dollars for its removal and disposal. It's clear that Murray's only concern is making deals for his friends.
18
Yesterday I was restraining myself from writing, "Speaking of monuments, this Jack Posobiec guy (the Pizzagate guy who organized the Lenin statue protest) has to be one monumentally stupid person."

Instead, I want to say something a little different. Speaking of monuments, Ed Murray is one monumentally stupid person. When I first read that he was calling for the removal of the Lenin statue, I immediately thought, "No way. This has got to be some kind of practical joke." Alas, Ed has indeed jumped the shark.

Perhaps now Dan Savage's hometown mayor Rahm Emanuel can vie with Ed for the title of "America's most embarrassingly tone-deaf mayor" by calling for The Art Institute of Chicago to remove Andy Warhol's Chairman Mao painting. Rahm can say, "Tear down this wall."

Hey, if we remove the Lenin statue, perhaps we can replace it with a statue of three individuals holding hands. In the middle is Ed Murray. On one side is Donald Trump. On the other is a composite teenage boy meant to represent Ed's foster child. And no, Ed, that statue is not intended to praise you, although hey, it's art; it's open to interpretation.
19
DOUG. @15, perfectly stated. I think I'm going to write our mayor a message consisting of entirely of those three words.
20
https://www.socialistalternative.org/len…
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https://www.socialistalternative.org
/lenin-original-dictator/
22
Let's just put Ed Murray's face on all the Confederate statues and monuments
23
I'm tired of irony with no real point, that's more a free pass of "didn't mean it." It's a lot like the non-funny jokes from people who just want a free pass to drop in a little rape or whatever.

And free speech for free speech's sake can be said about anything, so it doesn't make much of an argument for something's good taste or social acceptability.

So yeah, I don't like the Lenin statue. But it's not anything like the Confederate statues which by explicit declared intent honor these people as heroes, and remember the slaving 'way of life' they stood for.

I'd suggest to leave it up for a year and a day to piss off the whatabouters, and then replace it with Octavia Butler to piss them off again.
24
I'm with Ferret @14.

I've lived in Seattle since way before the Lenin statue was brought to Fremont. I have never, in all these years, met a single person who takes the statue seriously. Everyone I have ever known has always considered it a tongue-in-cheek joke, a lark, poking fun at the fall of the Soviet Union, something for the tourists to giggle at.

The statue doesn't glorify Lenin; it mocks him. In no way does it equate to the plethora of statues glorifying the confederacy (and intimidating African-Americans, which is the real purpose of most of them).

Leave the Lenin statue right where it is, so we may continue to mock it for decades to come.
25
@14@24

So if a statue of Pinochet that "no one took seriously" was set up, would that be okay? Or how about Bin Laden?

And in fact, people are disgusted by that thing: "When it was installed at its current location in 1996, the head of Seattle’s Polish Home Association, Marian Strutynski, told The Seattle Times that she was appalled and equated Lenin with Stalin and Hitler, saying Lenin represents the deaths of millions of people."-

Source: http://www.kiro7.com/news/local/lenin-st…

To people who lived through the Eastern bloc and experience communism first hand, a monument to Lenin in their city is just as unnerving as a monument to the Confederacy is for an African American who lived through Jim Crow. Just because it isn't bowed down to doesn't mean it doesn't represent something awful.

Why is it so hard to understand that both Confederate monuments and the Lenin statue should come down? And spare me the "its on private property!" screech. If a Confederate monument was sold to a private business and just moved up the road, people would be pissed. The city or a museum should buy it and it should be replaced with a statue of Chris Cornell.
26
Murray is just keeping his name out there.He knows that after the election he will be a bad memory in Seattle.As far as the memorial at the cemetery.It was paid for with private funds along with the ground it sat on.
27
How about Murray remove himself and the rest of the people of Seattle deal with what we have to deal with? Murray is slipping deeper into pathetic little man territory.

or what @15 said
28
@25 "So if a statue of Pinochet that "no one took seriously" was set up, would that be okay? Or how about Bin Laden?"

First, the importance about the Fremont Lenin Statue is the style of the statue, not because it is Lenin. Second, the importance of when it was casted, it was in done in Czechoslovakia right before the Velvet Revolution. It was trying to capture a different Lenin, than the boring Lenin Statues, with a hand raise, or looking wooden.

Many pictures of Christ, especially in the Renaissance and Baroque eras, were not about Christ, but trying to capture a moment, trying to express the secondary characters. Ditto with Michelangelo's "Pietá", which may have the body of Christ, but the main focus of the statue is Mary. Much like I doubt Michelangelo's statue "David" is hardly a real life version of King David, who killed many thousands of people. Instead it is about trying to capture the male physique..

The Fremont Lenin Statue is an artwork. It doesn't glamorize Lenin, it doesn't show respect to Lenin, it doesn't whitewash his cold hearted barbarity. It is not put on a pedestal in the middle of Fremont Avenue N and N 35th St. It is about showing about how the production of ubiquitous statue for a short period of time in Eastern Europe, (44-45 years) had an anomaly. It is distinct, it was experimenting with the style in the realm can only be allowed in an authoritarian regime on its last legs, before the regime collapse, (1989 Velvet Revolution in Czechoslovakia)

The police state power of Stalinist regimes are gone. Whatever power or glory the Lenin Statue in Fremont had when it is cast, was gone when Communist regimes fell, The Cult of Personality vanish in thin air along with the Eastern European Stalinist regimes. Instead, we have left is an artwork, that is green from discoloration, that isn't a threat to anyone, perhaps to the Fremont Troll.

Art is suppose to cause a discussion, it is suppose to stir emotion. it is very succinct form of communications, one is suppose to feel it, whether good feelings or disgust. One feelings may change over time by looking at the same artwork, (one reason I would never get a tattoo, because what maybe beautiful one day, may be oppressive the next and vice a versa)

The Lenin Statue in Fremont is not about Lenin, aka Vladimir Ilich Ulyanov, it is about the movement of Lenin, there is a difference. It should be left alone, and looked upon as a reflection about the time it was created. It is not a celebration of idolization of Lenin.

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@28

Your comment is no doubt wasted on @25. But I find it thoughtful and illuminating. Thank you.
30
"What the fuck is Eddie talking about, Dude?"
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@31 "While we are at it, lets demolish the Washington Monument and the Jefferson Monument."

The whole slippery slope argument, (Take down Robert E. Lee Statue, Washington and Jefferson are next) failure to understand that George Washington and Thomas Jefferson, fought and founded the United States of America. Robert E. Lee was trying to tear the country apart, and committing treason while doing it..

George Washington and especially Thomas Jefferson have many faults. However they were essential in the creation and preserving the United States.

The big problem with the Statues of Confederate leaders, is they were created to whitewash history. Southerners made up a false narrative why they fought and lost the US Civil War. The statues were reaffirming this, that these men were noble warriors, whom deserve respect..

Instead as the US gets more multicultural, they are looked upon as out of place, beside that narrative has fallen apart. These leaders of the Confederacy committed treason, they fought to keep slavery. They felt so strong in slavery, they were willing to commit treason. It was never about "State Rights" or "unfair taxes" it was about maintaining slavery, because it was too lucrative for the South to give up. The Statues should be in a museum, not in squares and plazas. There are too many to get rid of, but some of the most prominent ones should be removed.

On another front, one of Thomas Jefferson's proudest achievements was the creation of the University of Virginia..
33
Murray's political career and public life is essentially over. You'd think that he would at last stop being so mealy-mouthed and say what he actually thinks.

And if this is what he actually thinks, it confirms what I've always thought about him - that he's just an empty suit opportunist.
34
If he manages to get Lenin pulled down, how much would it cost to replace with a big statue of Ed Murray?
35
Irony is dead. Statue of Lenin, bought by an American and placed in a neighborhood where he is forced to watch small business thrive in a capitalist system, would be placing him in hell.
KEEP LENIN IN HELL! KEEP HIM IN FREMONT!
36
There is no irony in my comment, just a double entendre.
37
Fahrenheit 451. Boom, it's underway.
38
Meh. Murray says he thinks they should be removed, but acknowledges he can't actually do anything. Why is this newsworthy?
39
@28
So just be confirm, you would be okay with a statue of Mussolini as long as it was "artistic"?

And I love how you ignore that people who survived the horrors of Leninism have voiced their objections. To a Russian immigrant whose parents were killed by the KGB, I doubt this statue would be seen as "artistic."

And it is a boring old Lenin statue, only he's walking forward instead of just standing. Big FUCKING deal. I guess a statue of Hitler sitting at a desk would be fine too.

"The police state power of Stalinist regimes are gone"
Please tell that to the people of Tibet, North Korea, and Venezuela. It would be news to them,

And the Confederacy is also long gone. So a statue of Jefferson Davis would be okay, as long as he looked a little different like maybe sitting on his rocking chair in old age? (not that I would support a Jefferson Davis statue of any kind, btw)

Oh, and the Russian communist party does not want this statue taken down...so much for it being a "dead ideology": https://www.rt.com/politics/400099-commu…

No matter how you look at it, it's hypocrisy to be against Confederate monuments on private land if you are not against Soviet monuments on private land. Especially when, as I already proved (but was ignored) many of the victims of communism find it disgusting. Having a statue of Lenin for the sake of it's "artistic merits" while ignoring the human tragedy he created is like having a statue of Bill Cosby in the home town of some of his victims.
40
@35

So then, by that logic, having a statue of Jefferson Davis in an affluent African American neighborhood would also be "ironic"? I mean, it would be hell for Davis to be forced to watch African Americans thrive.

@31
Yes, we should tear down every monument to every government official in the history of AmeriKKKa, or at least sell them to private individuals/organizations and give them money as reparations to anyone who ever did jail time for drug charges. And we should burn down the capitols of every state and the federal government, and recommission every publicly owned AmeriKKKan flag as toilet paper.
Your point?
41
Ed's call for these monuments to be removed will have as much effect as DOUG.s calls for Ed to be removed.
42
@40 So you really seem to suppose that in its present location, it really serves as a monument to Lenin? Like there might be someone who passes by and secretly thinks, at last, Fremont pays homage to my hero? I guess it takes all kinds, but whether or not V. Lenin is your hero, I would think no one could be so obtuse as to think this statue is here to commemorate his glorious anything.

Don't worry about @28. He's right, I suppose, it's art, but that puts it beyond his authority to tell us what it's about. I could as well come up with some story about how it means the corpse of Joe McCarthy has lost its dead grip over Fremont, and it would be just as valid (i.e., not particularly.) Fremont has (or had, anyway) a junk yard esthetic, and that's what Lenin's doing there. Junk yard art.
43
@42

"Junk yard art" that is standing in its original form? I could see if it was permanently mutilated, like maybe someone brought it there, spray-painted it, added piercings and re-named it "anarchy in the USSR" or something, but no: it stands the exact same way it did when it was unveiled as a piece of propaganda for a regime that murdered countless innocent people.

And I love how everyone of my points is ignored (as usual) So, those people in Seattle who grew up in the Eastern bloc and saw their family members killed, their feelings don't amount to jack shit?

And what if one of the Confederate monuments that were taken down was brought to Seattle and put on a private piece of land for everyone to see? Who the fuck would YOU be to tell anyone what it is about? I mean, no one would pay homage to it. So why not?

And I love how the fact that I proved that communists do indeed pay homage to it is completely ignored as well. Here, again, is the link to how the Russian communist party wants the statue of their founder to remain in place...and you, once more, will ignore it and continue to spew nonsense.
http://www.telesurtv.net/english/news/Ru…
44
When you remove statues in the US due to identity politics and focus the fact that some people are "offended" by the history that is part of US, you have set the tone for cultural suicide. The civil war, slavery, annihilation of the native peoples are a part of our history, be it good or evil. When you start removing symbols due to emotions and self imposed moral standards or politicians wanting to feed their ego's....you open the door WIDE OPEN...for subjective decisions. We see that happening all over the US...and if Murray's step doesn't convince you of that rational...I don't know what would!
45
My read of history places Lenin as the organizing figure against the authoritarian, elites of czarist Russia. He wanted to give power back to the people and served to motivate the revolution which did just that. In its aftermath, a new sort of totalitarianism emerged--these things are tough to control. I don't view Lenin as a totalitarian or despot--and certainly not a person willing to enslave. The moral equivalency suggested by Murray seems ignorant--or maybe I am!
46
If it seems like Lenin might have been an OK guy, your read of history has a few pages more to go. There's a good reason why people paint the Fremont statue's hands red.
47
The main concern here is that we are once more ignoring the issue of racism in America. By focusing on Lenin we are falling for a red herring and not confronting the historic problem of monuments honoring Confederate leaders. Pointing fingers at a Lenin statue is the easy way out as it allows us to avoid thinking about our own, American, history.

Here are more of thoughts on this topic:

http://www.seattletimes.com/opinion/whil…